Zero Waste is a movement more and more people are getting into. I practice a zero waste lifestyle as much as my situation allows, but I'm far from perfect. The most important thing is that you make the changes you are able to make, depending upon your financial situation, your knowledge, your motivation, and even how much free time you have.
What is waste?
Anything which cannot be turned into a new product through industrial processing or a (relatively) simple organic process. For example, food waste in a landfill is waste - it does not readily turn into fertilizer for new plants. Food scraps put into a compost pile and used to fertilize a garden is not waste - it's a product.
Is it realistic?
Absolutely not. Not in our current society. Even if you drive an electric car, use entirely reusable packaging, make all your food at home, there is still unseen waste, such as the fossil-fuel generated electricity, the oil used in transporting your food and packaging, and so on. So much of this is bigger than the individual consumer, and we can only control things to some extent.
What can I do?
There's a lot you can do. Some of it is really easy, like saying "no" to straws. Some of it is much tougher, like starting a compost pile at your house.
Note, this is a work-in progress and definitely not comprehensive.
- Cloth napkins and towels before paper towel
- Lidded Storage containers before plastic wrap or foil
- Wash with cold water (dishes, hands, and laundry)
- Use less A/C & heating. ~76 in summer, ~68 in winter. Dress accordingly
- Use 2 or 3 sheets of toilet paper with careful folds
- Let yellow mellow, brown goes down
- Start composting
- Aggressively recycle
- Go paperless - or talk to your boss about it
- Carpool if able
- Reusable packaging if you bring your lunch
Shopping & Groceries
- Buy products in recyclable packaging
- Bring your own bags or skip bagging with small loads
- say "no" to receipts
Restaurants & Fast food
- Say "no" to straws
- Say "no" to napkins
- Bring your own to-go container
- Say "no" to bags
- Bring your own cup (fast food)
- Say "no" to receipts
Thank you for checking this out! I hope to improve this article soon, add more information, and organize it better.
- by Reed Sutman
- Macon Zero President